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Last Updated: Thursday, 11 March, 2004, 15:53 GMT
Tanzania star returns
Emmanuel Muga
BBC Sport, Dar-es-Salaam

Said Maulid
Said Maulid's Tanzanian citizenship has been confirmed

A Tanzanian high court in Dar es Salaam has ruled that international midfielder Said Maulid is a bona fide citizen of the country.

The 24-year-old Taifa Stars and Yanga SC midfielder had lost his Tanzanian nationality in July 2002, after the immigration department declared that he was a DR Congo citizen who had entered the country as a refugee.

As a result he was kicked out of the national team, which was preparing for the Tunisia 2004 qualifying campaign.

Maulid was later ordered to obtain a Congolese passport before continuing his club career with Yanga SC.

This angered him into declaring that he was quitting football to be a fisherman instead.

But he later changed his mind and began legal proceedings after getting advice from his supporters.

The court in October last year allowed Maulid to resume his club and international career pending determination of the main case.

The truth has prevailed, I am very happy
Said Maulid

Now Principal Judge Hamis Msumi ruled on Thursday in Dar es Salaam that claims by the Immigration Department that Maulid crossed Lake Tanganyika into Tanzania and was received at the Rugufu refugee camp in Kigoma had no basis.

"This court is satisfied that Said Maulid is a bona fide citizen of Tanzania," ruled Justice Msumi.

Maulid expressed happiness after the ruling.

"The truth has prevailed, I am very happy," he told BBC Sport.

"This gives me an opportunity to concentrate on football.

"Before that, half my mind was in court and I couldn't concentrate on my football."

Yanga official Abdul Sauko criticised the government for its previous stance.

"This is a victory not only for Yanga but for Tanzanian football in general," he said.

"Other countries search for foreign nationals to play for them but for us we are trying to banish our own players," Sauko added.




SEE ALSO
Tanzania star bounces back
20 Oct 03  |  African
Taifa star turns fisherman
12 Jul 03  |  African



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